Sunday, 26 July 2009

Ordered 3 CDs

Sometimes you just can't resist pressing that proceed button on these online shopping sites!

Got 3 CDs on the way. Crash the System is a new one and it's simply a great new band from Sweden with four of the best singers to ever hold a mic, from this famed land for rock and metal. The two men behind the project Daniel Flores and Sören Kronqvist are legends of the melodic rock/aor style and boy have they delivered big time. Just a great album, chock full of magical melodic rock/aor tunes. The singers in question are Goran Edman, Mats Leven, Tommy Vikstrom and Bjorn Janssen and each gets to sing 2-3 songs each. I like the songs from Vikstrom bets of all, the guy is just a legend.

The other two albums I ordered are no lesser lights either, namely being the Praying Mantis masterpiece Sanctuary and Jorn's new CD, Spirit Black. Both are absolutely great stuff if you ask me with slight preference for the Praying Mantis which is just a great and huge come back effort. Speaking of the old Mantis boys, I bought a ticket for their gig at the Purple Turtle on the 5th of August in a couple of weeks. Will be cool to see these all time legends of early NWOBHM/AOR. I hope they play loads from the new album as well and not just the older songs as I don't know them that well. Should be good either way and the ticket was dirt cheap at only £5. Can't go wrong there can you..

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Wembley Cup

Well me an my mate Sep saw two games at the Wembley Cup. The matches themselves weren't spectacularly brilliant or anything but it was good to finally see the new Wembley being used for what it was built for. First game turned out to be a bit of a mismatch to be honest. Celtic beat these Egyptian muppets 5-0 which was a little unexpected in my book. I think these egyptians probably just came for the ride or the exposure but they didn't exactly cover themselves in glory.

The second game was more competitive and finally ended in a 1-1 draw with Spurs and Barcelona. Barca had hardly any of their stars playing at all, but they still showed they have a great reserve side with slick passing and movement. Spurs were a little laboured but eventually got a luckyish set piece equaliser and went close to actually winning it in the end.

Wembley is a great stadium no doubt about it but the service for food is rather on the slow and incompetent side to say the least. Having queued for 30 minutes for food we were then informed that the food would take another 10-15 minutes to arrive which would mean it's too close to kick off and so we gave it a miss. Definitely a spanner in the works there somewhere. They should have the food ready and waiting or at least give some idea to people in the queue that they will have to wait even longer once they get to the front.

Anyway it wasn't a bad old night. We had a good view of the pitch and the weather behaved itself more or less apart from one brisk deluge.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Wember-leeee is for football!

Finally I am going to the home of football to watch er.....FOOTBALL!

I've been there 3 times now since the rebuild and each was to see a concert. Well finally I decided to nab tickets for this Wembley Cup thingy with Celtic, Spurs, Barca and Al Ahly. I will see two games on the same day. Sure it would have been cool if it was United but seeing Barca can't be bad can it. Should be a fun day and I just hope the rain relents for me as I don't fancy getting soaked to the skin in my seat for 5 hours!

Friday, 17 July 2009

Falconer / Dragonland Live Report

Well it was full on power metal night at the Underworld tonight with Falconer headlining and support from fellow Swedes, Dragonland. We could have done with one more, perhaps local power metal band as well but two great bands would have to do I guess. We haven't had the pleasure of seeing Falconer for a few years now and when I heard about this gig I snapped up a ticket pretty sharpish.

First up were Dragonland who have a very low profile here in the UK it must be said. I like their albums a lot especially the latest one Astronomy but all their albums have great euro power metal songs. Live they were a very tight unit indeed. The singer did a great job, singing very high but very clear. The rest of the band was on top form and they went down well. The best song was the title track Astronomy and finally the last song, a rip roaring cover of Neverending Story from Limahl and the kids film of the same name which everyone sang along with.

Soon enough the Falconer guys took to the stage and got ready. Even after all these years being in and around a metal band, Mattias Blad's awkwardness as a frontman isn't any less obvious. He must be the only man to front a metal band and not have a bead of sweat on his brow hardly, at the end of their set. The man really is the least metal dude ever to sing in a metal band I have ever seen, it's almost quite comical to watch his lack of movement to these energetic songs. But what a voice he has. He sang to perfection tonight. The sound levels were pretty perfect too although a bit loud but it always is in the Underworld and hence the use of home made ear plugs to take the edge off the volume which actually made the sound perfect.

The band is more or less new apart from Stefan and Mattias of course but the tightness is there for all to see. Stefan plays the melodic riffs effortlessly and the new guitarist on the other side is very adept at his riffs and solos too. But it' s all about the tunes. They have quite a catalogue to choose from but they concentrated on the two latest albums and pretty much ignored the middle albums. Of course they had to include the 'hits' from the first two records but I could actually have done with more tracks from the phenomenal debut and follow up to be honest. The best songs of the night were Upon the Grave, Mindtraveller and finally the best of all was Clarion Call with it's massive sing along. The whole of the Underworld was singing that one let me tell you.

The fairly impressive 300-400 turn-out chanted hard for an encore and Stefan returned on his own and said "Thanks but we're not preofessional enough to have and encore!" which drew a few hearty laughs and smirks. So Stefan asked which song from the main set we would like to hear again? Despite his plea, every one was chanting for Heresy in Disguise but I guess Mattias doesn't know the words and they haven't practiced it, so the band launched into an over the top blistering version of Upon the Grave again which was even better than the version in the main set. Shame that they didn't play long at all, barely an hour, but hey it was good to see them.

Falconer aren't the most impressive live band by a long chalk but they play perfectly and Dragonland were more energetic and a good back up band which made for an enjoyable night for power metal fans in London and we haven't had that many of them recently since the Sabation gig if I recall correctly. Let's hope there's another one on the horizon sometime.

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Updated faves list for 2009

With just over half the year complete it's high time I completed a list of my favourite albums from the year so far as the list has grown and grown in recent times. As usual I always find plenty to like in various styles. The ones in BOLD are purchases made already. I won't buy all the list but I try to get the ones I like the most. Next albums on my to buy list are Cage, DGM, Hammerfall, Jorn, Praying Mantis, Vindictiv and Tyr. These days I don't tend to buy any more death metal cds but if I find the Bone Gnawer anywhere cheapish I will make that purchase cause it's one of my fave classic old school death metal cds this year and there's been a few but Bone Gnawer are right at the top of the tree. So here is the list finally:

Adamantra - Revival
Alestorm - Black Sails At Midnight
Amorphis - Skyforger
Andem - Doch' lunnogo Sveta
Artillery - When Death Comes
Astra - From Within

Blood Red Throne - Souls Of Damnation
Blood Tsunami - Grand Feast for Vultures
Bloodbound - Tabula Rasa
Bone Gnawer - Feast of Flesh

Cage - Science Of Annihilation
Candlemass - Death Magic Doom
Coldspell - Infinite Stargaze

Dark Moor - Autumnal
Debauchery - Rockers and War
Delain - April Rain
Disinfect - Screams of Pleasure
DGM - FrAme
Domain - The Chronicles of Love, Hate and Sorrow

Eradicator - The Atomic Blast
Evil Masquerade - Fade to Black

Fairyland - A Score to a New Beginning
Fleshgod Apocalypse - Oracles
Free Spirit - Pale Sister of Light

God Dethroned-Passiondale
Gorod - Process of a New Decline
Gwyllion - The Edge Of All I Know

Hammerfall -No Scarifice, No Victory
Hardline - Leaving the end Open
Heart of Cygnus - Over Mountain, Under Hill

Ignominious Incarceration - Of Winter Born
Ilium - Ageless Decay
Impellitteri - Wicked Maiden

Jack Starr's Burning Starr - Defiance
Jorn - Spirit Black

Killing Touch - One of a Kind

Legenda Aurea - Ellipsis

Masterstroke - As Days Grow Darker
Mind Key - Pulse for a Graveheart
Mutant - Laserdrome EP
Mystic Prophecy - Fireangel

Napalm Death - Time Waits For No Slave
Necrocest - Prenatal Massacre

Obscura - Cosmogenesis
Old Man's Child - Slaves of the World
Orphan Project - Spooning Out The Sea

Pestilence - Resurrection Macabre
Pitch Black - Hate Division
Place Vendome - Streets of Fire
Places of Power - Now is the Hour
Planeshift - Fate Breed
Prayers Of Sanity - Religion Blindness
Praying Mantis - Sanctuary

Reinxeed - Higher
Requiem - Infiltrate Obliterate Dominate
Rise - Pentagramnation

Saint Deamon - Pandeamonium
Silent Memorial - Retrospective
Sinocence - Scar Obscura

Tardy Brothers - Bloodline
Trick Or Treat - Tin Soldiers
Tyr - By the Light of the Northern Star

Vindictiv - Ground Zero

Wizard - Thor
Wolf - Ravenous

Saturday, 4 July 2009

Saint Michael at Old Trafford

In a shock move from out the blue, pint-sized midget and ex decent footballer Michael Owen has signed a two-year contract for United. Fergie's marbles were last seen rolling down the old East Lancs Road towards Scouseville. But seriously, I suppose we should give him a chance to prove his worth to United but I've got my doubts.